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2011.09.15

The privatization of domain name administration...

何年か前に不採択になったアブストラクトを発見。もったいないので、こちらに貼っておく。

The privatization of domain name administration initiated more-than-a-decade long discussion on who should operate the domain name system and the rest of the Internet and how, which now forms a critical component of what is known as Internet governance today. In this sense, domain name administration is what Internet governance is all about.

The country-code top-level domain, or ccTLD, among other concerns, presents a unique perspective on Internet governance, since it is operated as if each ccTLD is a sovereign entity and enjoys a considerable degree of independence and self-determination.

However, as the new Affirmation of Commitments states it, the Internet is 'a single and interoperable network', and what is good to some part of the Internet may not necessarily be that way to the rest. In principle, the managers of the ccTLD are requested to "perform a public service on behalf of the Internet community".

The author has conducted a comprehensive survey on how ccTLDs are operated across the Internet, and, in particular, how ccTLDs are structured, priced and utilized. The result of the survey brought about several findings. ccTLD registration fees in nominal terms tend to concentrate towards a specific price point (approximately US$50). But what they mean in real terms to local registrants vary depending on the income level. The registration fee and the number of domain names seem to be correlated even if the correlation coefficient is not strong.

When this correlation is examined more closely, one may find out that correlation between price and domain name usage is slightly higher in high-income ccTLDs than in low-income ccTLDs. One interpretation of this is that as domain name market develop, domain names are marketed to the local community while when domain name market is less developed, domain names tend to be marketed to external community with more purchasing power. In the longer term, however, those ccTLDs who are now serving more to international registrants will need to serve domestic registrants once the market has developed. For this concern, they will need to ensure there are open, i.e. unregistered, names available to domestic registrants.


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